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Latest F1 news in brief
  • Theissen not 'nervous' about Heidfeld saga
  • Alonso not gloating after Hamilton shunt
  • Schu brothers in the news
  • Button vows to stay at Honda

Theissen not 'nervous' about Heidfeld saga
(GMM) BMW team principal Mario Theissen is still refusing to give anything away regarding Nick Heidfeld's expiring contract.

The Hinwil based outfit's founder Peter Sauber said this week that a new deal for the 30-year-old German is merely a "formality", but Theissen insists that announcements about drivers will not occur until later this year.

He did, however, hint that hunting for drivers is not his priority at the moment.

"This is a topic that does not make me nervous," Theissen told the news agency 'sid', "because everything is running well as it is.

"At the moment I see other things that are more important -- such as the performance of the car."

Theissen also played down expectations for the rest of the Monaco weekend, explaining that the Principality hosted BMW-Sauber's "most difficult" GP in 2006.

"So far, we have been particularly good at the faster kind of circuits," the German said.

Alonso not gloating after Hamilton shunt
(GMM) World champion Fernando Alonso refused to gloat in Monaco after his rookie teammate Lewis Hamilton ended Thursday practice in the barriers.

The race-weekend mistake was Hamilton's first in an otherwise sensational early career, but McLaren driver Alonso said it is easy to end in tears on the famous street circuit.

"Thursdays here are always really slippery and we saw other drivers have problems as well.

"I had one or two moments myself," the Spaniard said.

Alonso also played down speculation in Monaco that, in the driver briefing here, he complained about Felipe Massa's tactics at the first corner of the recent Spanish grand prix.

"No, we talked about the safety of the Monaco circuit," he insisted, "and little things that we can do to make it better -- like putting more tires at the first corner, where we saw two or three cars having incidents.

"I think I have said it before that this is not my favorite circuit to race on."

Schu brothers in the news
(GMM) For very different reasons, F1's famous Schumacher brothers were in the headlines as the Monaco grand prix got into gear.

Michael Schumacher, who last year retired as a seven time world champion, set tongues wagging when he chose the outside of the Rascasse corner as his trackside vantage point for the afternoon practice session -- the very scene of his 'parking' incident during qualifying a year ago.

It was also rumored that Schumacher - in Monte Carlo as a Ferrari 'advisor' - ran into trouble with the police last week while driving a Ferrari on the famous 'Nordschleife' layout at the Nurburgring in Germany.

But he told the newspaper Bild: "The police stopped me because they wanted my autograph."

Michael's younger brother Ralf, meanwhile, extended his formula one trough on Thursday by crashing at the Swimming Pool and lagging his Toyota teammate Jarno Trulli's pace by more than two seconds.

Later though, he was spotted in a jocular mood on the Toyota yacht with his incoming boss Tadashi Yamashina, amid rumors that he has already signed a contract extension for 2008.

Ralf was then quoted by the 'sid' agency as saying: "I am one hundred per cent sure that I will drive in formula one also next year."

Button vows to stay at Honda
(GMM) Speculation of a looming 'Buttongate 3' has been eased in Monaco, after the Honda driver denied that he might try to wiggle out of his contract ahead of 2008.

Jenson Button has endured a woeful opening stanza to the season with the uncompetitive RA107, but he hit out at commentators who think he should quit Honda.

The 27-year-old Briton was the subject of intense criticism in recent years after twice trying to escape from contracts with the BAR-Honda and Williams teams.

"A year later the same people come out say 'oh, you've got to move, go somewhere else'," Button is quoted as saying by the Daily Mail.

"I'm not going anywhere. I'm staying here."

He speculated that Brackley based Honda produced the dreadful 2007 car because the outfit did not have "the right people in the right place", amid rumors of a looming personnel revamp led by team principal Nick Fry.

"We need to make sure the people here are doing the right jobs and they are in the right positions in the team," Button said.

"We have to make sure everything is moving in the right direction now, and I think it is."

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